What is long term car rental?
As the phrase suggests, long term car rental refers to renting a car for a longer period of time from a duration of one month to a year, or even beyond. In long term car rental, one can choose from more functional car models such as Hondas and Toyotas to more opulent models such as Audis, BMWs and Mercedes. The cost of hiring a Honda Vezel comes up to about $1700 a month. Owning a car costs about $100,000, so if your wallet is not fat, long term car rental is more viable.
Common reasons for long term car rental?
The most compelling reason why people choose to rent a car long term is cost. If you buy your own car, the downpayment alone is hefty: you will have to cough up 30% down payment amounting to about $30,000.
Add to this there will be a lot of other paperwork to fulfil such as buying car insurance, the certificate of entitlement, road tax and maintenance fee of the vehicle. It is a lot of hassle compared to renting a car long term, which basically only requires you to fill up your particulars and just put in a few hundred dollars of deposit before driving off. You also don’t have to lift a finger on car insurance and maintenance of the vehicle, as the rental company covers these for you as the actual owner of the car.
Key benefits of long term car rental
In Singapore, there are many pros for renting a car long term, whether it is in terms of cost, convenience, or flexibility.
The cost of renting a car long term is much more affordable than going all out to buy your own car. Aside from the purchase price of the car, there are other costs such as the certificate of entitlement and road tax. Rentals can also eradicate worries of car maintenance and car insurance. A car will also depreciate in value so if you buy a car and sell it later, you will be selling it at a loss. If your job no longer needs you to own a car, you can stop renewing the rental contract so that you don’t have to pay so much versus owning your own car and continuing with a hefty loan payment.
There are many car rental companies in Singapore. Choose a reputable car company and you can easily get your hands on a variety of cars to try out. Renting allows you to cater to shorter term needs and adjust according to changing needs. For example you may decide that you need more room in your car and change to a SUV or you have the urge to try out a luxurious model and you can opt for an Audi.
Renting a car long term means you can take your family on long road trips. You will have the freedom of stopping to take photographs, or try out eateries, stop for toilet stops and be yourself without sharing a room with strangers. You can also venture out on impulse such as going for late night eat outs, family outings or gatherings with friends, without needing to think about missing the last train home.
Cons of long term car rental
Despite looking very attractive for a person who needs a car, long term car rental in Singapore has its fair share of cons. Accumulating a huge amount of money to pay for rental is one, paying for the excess part of car insurance is another.
Beyond a certain point, rental may be more costly than actual car ownership, or a more long-term lease. However, when managed right, long term car rental should never cost you that much. It’s important to understand the role long-term car rental plays, and use it appropriately.
The excess part of the car insurance
Although the rental company usually takes care of the car insurance part, do bear in mind there is a deductible component that you have to pay when there is a car accident. If the deductible is 30% you have to pay the 30% of car repair fees as stated in the car insurance contract. This deductible amount is also doubled if you intend to drive your car into Malaysia, as you will be exposing your car to a lot of risk in Malaysia including a higher probability of road accidents and even thefts.
Common misconceptions of long term car rental
It is difficult to fulfil the eligibility for rental
The truth is, it isn’t, actually. You just have to be between 23 to 65 years old and own a driving license and have at least 2 years of driving experience. If you are a foreigner, you have to provide a foreign driving licence. That’s all!
There are restrictions on the rental experience
Contrary to this belief, there aren’t many restrictions. Most car rental companies don’t control where and how you drive in Singapore after you sign on the dotted line. Some may restrict your ability to drive in Malaysia, but most allow it after some fashion. There are also a myriad of car models for you to choose from, so you’re not restricted to just a few makes and models. You just have to check with your car rental company in advance and not do things last minute. You can also choose your preferred duration of lease. In addition, you can fully enjoy car amenities like Bluetooth, built in GPS and all the latest bells and whistles too.
The paperwork is a hassle
The paperwork is actually a breeze, you can even choose to pay online through contactless methods such as paying with a credit card. You don’t have to worry about car insurance as it is included in the rental fee and if your car breaks down the contract also includes a car tow service to take your car for repairs. Do remember to include the names of all drivers so that you can claim insurance if someone else drives the car.
Rental is the perfect middle ground for driving in Singapore
In conclusion, driving a car can add up the convenience factor versus not having a car. But owning a car in Singapore comes with a sky high price, if you need a car for only a year or so, it is a wise move to rent a long term car so that you enjoy the conveniences and have the flexibility of stopping the contract or renting a different kind of car whenever you want.